By Sherrie Norris
Fresh cabbage is a mountain staple and usually harvested in abundance around the High Country this time every year.
A vegetable native to England and northwestern France, cabbage is grown throughout Europe, Asia and America.
Of the three types of cabbage — white, red and Savoy —white is the most popular in the United States.
We love it raw, cooked, boiled, fried — and pickled, as in sauerkraut. We’ve just recently made our annual fall “run” of kraut and waiting patiently to make sure it turns out just right.
Country girls know you’ve got to follow “the signs” when making sauerkraut – and I can assure you, I wouldn’t do it any other way. (I’ve tried and it ended in disaster!) It’s not something I can explain, but I know it to be real.
Belonging to the mustard family, cabbage is closely related to other leafy vegetables including turnips, cauliflower, broccoli and Brussels sprouts.
Cabbage often gives off an unpleasant aroma while cooking, but
adding a celery rib or several lemon wedges to the pan will eliminate the smell.
A cabbage head, cut into a shell, with its center hollow out, makes a great “bowl” for a vegetable dip, coleslaw or potato salad.
It’s just another wonderful vegetable with a variety of ways to be enjoyed.
Cabbage Au Gratin
1 medium heat cabbage, shredded
1 can condensed cream of celery soup
¼ cup milk
1 cup grated American cheese
½ tsp. salt
1/8 tsp. pepper
½ cup breadcrumbs
2 Tbs. melted butter
Cook cabbage in boiling salted water until tender, 5-7 minutes. Meanwhile, combine soup, milk, cheese, salt and pepper in saucepan. Heat, stirring until cheese melts. Combine with cabbage. Place in greased casserole dish. Toss breadcrumbs with butter until coated. Sprinkle on top of cabbage. Bake in oven at 350 degrees until thoroughly heated, about 15 minutes.
Simple Cabbage Surprise
1 can cream of celery soup
1 cup sour cream
1 tsp. caraway seed
1 med. head cabbage, cut into wedges
In large skillet, blend soup, sour cream and caraway seeds; add the cabbage. Cover and cook over low heat until cabbage is tender. Cook for about 20 minutes and serve.
1 cabbage head
2 cups shredded Cheddar cheese
1 stack of packaged saltine crackers, crushed
2 cans cream of mushroom soup
Salt and pepper
Butter or margarine
1 large can French fried onion rings
Shred cabbage and cook in small amount of water until tender. Drain. Heat soup and stir until creamy. Place ½ of the cabbage in casserole dish; top with ½ of the soup, 1 cup cheese, and ½ the crushed crackers.
Layer remaining cabbage, soup, cheese and cracker crumbs in same order. Dot with butter; salt and pepper to taste. Top with onion rings. Bake at 350 for 45 minutes.